23 Inspirational Books & Movies for the Basketball Fanatic

This basketball-inspired list will motivate you on and off the court.

March 18, 2017
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You’ve made your bracket and prepared to watch your favorite team take it all the way, but sometimes the March Madness fever calls for a little bit more entertainment. Get pumped for the annual NCAA tournament with this basketball-inspired list of books and movies.

More: 5 March Madness Moves That'll Whip You Into Winning Shape

Made for the college basketball fanatics in your life (or for yourself!), this is your one-stop shop for the most motivational basketball entertainment you can enjoy at any time. There's no need to wait for the Big Dance.

"Dean Smith" by Jeff Davis

Relive the story of Dean Smith, former men's college basketball head coach, and the University of North Carolina "coaching legend," in this revealing biography.

99¢ eBook edition​, Amazon

"Earl The Pearl" by Earl Monroe

Reflect with Earl Monroe as he looks back on his upbringing and career, leading up to his historic championship ride with the New York Knicks.

$1.99 eBook edition, Amazon

"Qaddafi's Point Guard" by Alex Owumi, Daniel Paisner

American basketball player, Alex Owumi, will teach you how to rise above the odds and achieve your wildest dreams in this book of hope, conflict, and triumph.

$1.99 eBook edition, Amazon

4/23 Amazon
"A Season on the Brink" by John Feinstein

Salute the history of the Indiana Hoosiers men's basketball team and ther unforgettable coach, Bob Knight, in this New York Times bestseller by John Feinstein, as the writer chronicles the squad's memorable 1985–86 season.

$17.00, Amazon

5/23 Amazon
"Geno" by Geno Auriemma

The head coach of the University of Connecticut Huskies women's basketball team Geno Auriemma tells all in this personal memoir.

$17.00, Amazon

The Game They Played
6/23 Amazon
"The Game They Played" by Stanley Cohen

Based on the true story of the CCNY basketball team's point shaving scandal of 1950–51, Cohen recounts the later legal troubles that haunted the players and the fixers. 

$14.99, Amazon

"The Jump" by Ian O'Connor

Filled with exclusive interviews with Sebastian Telfair's closest professional and personal mentors, The Jump tells the story of the former high school superstar basketball player and his quest for superstardom.

$15.99, Amazon

8/23 Amazon
"The Jordan Rules" by Sam Smith

Read about the most famous Chicago Bull of all time (for now) and his cruise to the team's first championship season. 

$9.95, Amazon

9/23 Amazon
"Sum It Up" by Pat Summitt

Former women's college basketball head coach, Pat Summitt, recalls her career, and how she accrued the most wins in NCAA basketball history.

$16.00, Amazon

10/23 Amazon
"Fab Five" by Mitch Albom

Take an in-depth look at Michigan's Fab Five in this New York Times bestseller by Mitch Albom.

$12.99, Amazon

11/23 Amazon
"Wooden" by John Wooden, Steve Jamison

The story of John Wooden, former basketball player and 12-year coach for the University of California, Los Angeles is both honest and insightful, and filled with personal stories from some of the sport's greatest figures, including Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Bob Costas.

$20.00, Amazon

12/23 Amazon
"The Book of Basketball" by Bill Simmons

Want to know everything about basketball? (And we mean everything.) Pick up this book from sports columnist, analyst, author, and podcaster, Bill Simmons.

$22.00, Amazon

13/23 Amazon

Helmed by Gene Hackman, this inspirational film about one Indiana high school's basketball team and their journey to the championship game will make it to your all-time favorites list. 

$4.99, Amazon

14/23 Amazon
"Dust Bowl Girls" by Lydia Reeder

Journey back to the early 1930's and relive this inspirational story of female triumph in the once male-dominated sport of basketball as the team from Oklahoma Presbyterian College took to the national stage.

$26.95, Amazon

15/23 Amazon
Hoop Dreams

Journey with teenagers Arthur Agee and William Gates as they travel from inner-city Chicago to St. Joseph High School in Westchester to pursue their NBA dreams.

$14.99, Amazon 

16/23 Amazon
He Got Game

With a temporary release from state prison, Jake Shuttlesworth (Denzel Washington) attempts to convince his estranged son to play basketball for the governor's alma mater.

$17.99, Amazon

17/23 Amazon
White Men Can’t Jump

Watch two basketball hustlers (Wesley Snipes and Woody Harrelson) swindle their way through the courts of Los Angeles.

$13.99, Amazon

18/23 Amazon
Glory Road

This film is based on a true story of the 1965–66 Texas Western Miners, the first all-black college basketball team.

$17.99, Amazon

19/23 Amazon
Blue Chips

The pressure of winning forces head coach Pete Bell (Nick Nolte) to resort to some unconventional tactics in this basketball drama.

$13.99, Amazon

20/23 Amazon
Space Jam

The greatest basketball player, Michael Jordan, and cartoon character, Bugs Bunny, team up to defeat an evil alien theme park owner in a basketball game that will determine their fate.

$7.99, Amazon

21/23 Amazon
Love & Basketball

In this drama, two aspiring basketball players (Glenndon Chatman and Jess Willard) are constantly torn between, you guessed it, love and (their love for) basketball. 

$12.99, Amazon

22/23 Amazon
Coach Carter

Samuel L. Jackson leads this inspirational story about the importance of excellence on and off the basketball court.

$13.99, Amazon

23/23 Amazon
Above the Rim

High school basketball star Kyle Watson is faced with a difficult decision in this infamous movie (which also stars the late Tupac Shakur): either take a college scholarship or pursue fast money.

$13.99, Amazon